Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Deer 'pose biggest threat' to Scotland's native woodlands

Deer represent the biggest threat to Scotland's native woodlands, according to an eight-year study by Forestry Commission scientists.

The publication of the Native Woodland Survey of Scotland has renewed debate over whether to cull deer.

Researchers said ancient woodland was being lost due to "excessive browsing and grazing", mainly by deer.

The findings of an inquiry into deer control by a Holyrood committee are due to be revealed later this week.

The report from Forestry Commission Scotland said 22.5% (311,153 ha) of Scotland's forests was native woodland. That equates to 4% of the land area of Scotland.

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